Early morning fire destroys former Gino’s building in downtown Kingston

Firefighters with Kingston Fire and Rescue look on as their colleagues on ladder and platform equipment target the flames within the former Gino’s Pizza and Spaghetti building on Princess Street in downtown Kingston on the night of Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2022. Photo by Logan Cadue/Kingstonist.

The building that was once home to the original Gino’s Pizza and Spaghetti will no longer exist by the end of the day on Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2022, after a fire in the building caused the second storey to collapse.

The incident, which kept firefighters with Kingston Fire and Rescue on scene for well over 12 hours, began at approximately 10:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2022. Fire crews responded to the scene, which is within the 500 block of Princess Street between Albert and Alfred Streets, to find “heavy smoke and fire conditions,” Kingston Fire and Rescue relayed on Wednesday, noting that, as of 11:30 a.m. that day, crews remained on scene and were expected to throughout the day.

As the blaze spread to the second floor and roof of the building, firefighters had their work cut out for them – and part of that work was cutting out gaps in the fencing around the vacant lot behind the building in order to attack the fire from the other side. Ladder and platform equipment were emplyed, allowing crews to fight the flames aerially, while other firefighters remained on the ground, continually dousing the building to combat the inferno.

“Fire crews are currently on scene extinguishing hot spots. An excavator has been brought in to assist with extinguishing hot spots. No injuries to report at this time and no estimated [cost of] fire damage [is available yet],” Kingston Fire and Rescue relayed just before noon on Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2022.

“[The fire] was difficult to extinguish, as the second floor collapsed, and the building was not structurally safe for firefighters to enter.”

Flooding on Alfred Street as a result of the water used to fight the fire. Photo by Peter McKenty/Kingstonist.

The amount of water needed to continually fight the fire across many hours resulted in the flooding of the basement of the building, as well as flooding in some of the homes on Alfred Street. A number of residents from homes on Alfred Street were seen leaving their residences with bedding supplies late into the night.

Kingston Police assisted in closing Princess Street from Albert Street to Alfred Street, and the roadway remained closed well into the afternoon on Wednesday. Kingston Police indicated they are not involved in the fire investigation, and could therefore not provide any further information.

Kingston Fire and Rescue is expected to make more information available later in the day on Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2022. Kingstonist will provide updated coverage as more information becomes available.

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